Plattsburgh The North Country Chamber of Commerce hosted a standing-room-only crowd of local business people and politicians for their annual New York State Legislative Breakfast Feb. 28.
Chamber President and CEO Garry Douglas kicked off the breakfast by lauding several local businesses, among them Nova Bus, whose President and CEO Jean Pierre Bearacat was one of the speakers. But the purpose for the breakfast was to bring business leaders together with the local political contingent, which was represented by state Sen. Betty Little, state Assemblywoman Janet Duprey and state Assemblyman Dan Stec.
Little spoke first, and among other topics, assailed Common Core testing mandates and procedures.
“We didn’t do ourselves any good with that test,” she said. “Don’t test on the Common Core, unless you have actually taught it for several years.”
Duprey spoke primarily about the positive trends in North Country economic development, crediting the North Country Chamber of Commerce with being a tremendous asset for North Country businesses. She said, too, that when she returned to Albany this week, she will be working toward an on-time budget for the fourth year in a row, a feat unprecedented for New York state.
Following their speeches the politicians took part in a spirited question-and-answer period with atendees covering a wide range of topics from education to allocation of state tax revineus.
In responding to a question about school funding, Stec chided the state for its approach to upstate versus downstate issues.
“Albany has a penchants toward the one size fits all approach, to treat the whole state like it’s one of the five boroughs,” he said.